Barnes & Noble, Inc. (NYSE: BKS), the world's largest bookseller, today announced an exclusive partnership with acclaimed children's author and illustrator Eric Carle and Penguin Group (USA). As a part of this partnership, Mr. Carle has created custom artwork featuring his beloved character the Very Hungry Caterpillar that can only be seen in Barnes & Noble stores and online at Barnes & Noble.com (www.bn.com). Fans of all ages will recognize Mr. Carle's distinctive artwork from his more than 70 books for children including beloved classics The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?. Customers will also get a sneak peek at art from his new title The Artist Who Painted a Blue Horse due to be released by Penguin this October.
This week, Barnes & Noble will begin to feature Mr. Carle's custom artwork in Barnes & Noble stores across the country and on Barnes & Noble.com (www.bn.com/carle) just in time to celebrate "The Very Hungry Caterpillar Day" on March 20. Artwork will be featured in Barnes & Noble store signage and displays, as well on the BN Kids pages on Barnes & Noble.com (www.bn.com) through July. A limited run of Barnes & Noble gift cards featuring the new artwork will also be available starting in April. And curriculum guides will also be distributed at BN Educator Nights. While books are the main focus, this four month-long promotion will also feature other products from The World of Eric Carle.
And the fun doesn't stop there. To kick off this wonderful collaboration, all Barnes & Noble stores will hold a nationwide Eric Carle Storytime event on Saturday, March 19, at 11 a.m. The event will include a reading of Eric Carle's books, snacks and interactive activities including arts and crafts projects with which children will be able to create collages with multi-colored tissue paper in the style of Eric Carle's artwork.
There will also be exclusive content available online at the BN.com Eric Carle page:
- Eric Carle Online Storytime - During the month of April, listen to Eric Carle read The Very Hungry Caterpillar for the Barnes & Noble.com Online Storytime program. This is a rare narration of the story by Mr. Carle himself. The Eric Carle Storytime is part of the BN.com monthly online feature (www.bn.com/storytime), perfect for children ages two through six, and showcases favorite children's books read by well-known authors and celebrities. To enhance the Storytime experience, illustrations and artwork are brought to life through pan-and-scan technology.
- Exclusive Q&A with Eric Carle - Fans can read an exclusive Q&A between Mr. Carle and Oliver Jeffers, the popular children's author and illustrator who has received numerous awards including the Nestles Smarties Book Prize Gold Medal and the Irish Book Awards Book of the Year.
- Video of Eric Carle - Mr. Carle discusses his artistic vision and technique.
- Barnes & Noble Kids' Expert Circle - In the spirit of Eric Carle's desire to show children that learning is fascinating and fun, Barnes & Noble's Expert Circle (www.bn.com/expertcircle) is recognizing the importance of art in a child's development. In her article "Encouraging a Love of Art Through Reading," Barnes & Noble Kids' Expert MaryAnn F. Kohl, an award-winning author, publisher and educational consultant, outlines how authors like Eric Carle use art to develop a child's imagination in her most recent Expert Circle article. MaryAnn says, "What these creative people have given to children through their classic storybooks is more than stories to love - it's an everlasting open door to creativity and imagination."
"Barnes & Noble is so honored to collaborate with such an iconic and talented children's book author," said Mary Amicucci, vice president of children's books for Barnes & Noble. "Eric Carle's illustrations make a book come to life, which is clear in his wonderful story The Very Hungry Caterpillar. We know that having his gorgeous artwork in our stores will not only be a beautiful addition, but will also inspire children to read and imagine."